March 20, 2008 -- Emeryville, CA. Three of the founding members of the New York Art Resources Consortium (NYARC)—the Frick Art Reference Library and the libraries of the Brooklyn Museum and The Museum of Modern Art—have selected Millennium as the integrated library system that will offer access to all three collections through a shared catalog. With a combined total of over 725,000 records describing books, periodicals, auction and exhibition catalogs, artist files, photograph collections, and archival materials, this partnership establishes one of the largest specialized web resources for the international art community. The Frick Art Reference Library, an Innovative client since 1987, will host and administer the NYARC shared system.
Funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the NYARC integrated library system will broaden access to the renowned research collections of each library and provide a platform for future collaborative efforts in collections development and information delivery services.
Improving Discovery of Art Resources
The NYARC libraries serve a wide range of users from the art historical community, including students, educators, collectors, journalists, independent scholars, the interested public, as well as the staff members of museums, galleries, and auction houses. The NYARC union catalog promises to be a rich resource to each of these groups, containing materials in the three libraries covering the entire span of art history, from ancient to contemporary.
In addition to the breadth of resource materials contained in the virtual collection, the wealth of distinctive material that will surface in each institution is startling. "Preliminary analysis of the three collections indicates that there is only a five percent overlap between the libraries, highlighting the uniqueness of each collection and illustrating how valuable this partnership will be to our users," says Lily Pregill, Project Coordinator for the NYARC ILS.
While providing users with a single search interface to bring together materials across the collections was a key component in selecting a system, equally important was the consortium members' need to retain their individuality with their existing web catalogs. "Although cooperation is central to our consortium," says Patricia Barnett, the Andrew W. Mellon Chief Librarian of the Frick Art Reference Library, "so is the ability to provide library-specific customization and identity. The NYARC Millennium system will allow users to search all three libraries' resources through a unified interface, while continuing to provide collection-specific searching using DADABASE (MoMA's online library catalog), FRESCO (Frick Research Catalog Online), and the Brooklyn Museum Library Online Catalog."
Strength in Numbers
The selection of the Innovative ILS is the outcome of a planning grant, also sponsored by the Mellon Foundation, that identified new ways to improve the discovery and delivery of research, coordinate core activities, and sustain shared resources. This effort resulted in the formation of the New York Art Resources Consortium (NYARC), of which the three libraries, together with The Metropolitan Museum of Art's Thomas J. Watson Library, are founding members. The four museum libraries are currently working with OCLC and JSTOR on other NYARC collaborations, but the implementation of a shared library system was targeted as a key element for moving into the future.
Beyond the traditional integrated library system, the NYARC Millennium package offers the group and their users seamless linking to electronic resources through WebBridge LR, extended access to valuable online collections through Web Access Management, and efficient management and improved user discovery of e-resources through Electronic Resource Management. All of these products represent new technology for each library.
"We've had a long relationship with Innovative and have confidence in its product development," says Deborah Kempe, Chief, Collections Management & Access at the Frick Art Reference Library. "Our NYARC Millennium system package offers us functionality that we could not have gained individually."
Says Deirdre Lawrence, Principal Librarian of the Brooklyn Museum: "The new shared ILS will provide us with the tools to offer unprecedented access to the research collections held in our respective institutions."
Milan Hughston, Chief of Library and Museum Archives at The Museum of Modern Art, adds, "The grant shows that through collaborative action our libraries can become a stronger resource to the art world and beyond."
About the Brooklyn Museum Libraries and Archives
The Brooklyn Museum (http://library.brooklynmuseum.org/) offers two specialized research libraries and archives, which support understanding of the Museum's encyclopedic collections, as well as the broader areas of art and cultural history. The collective holdings of the Libraries, approximately 300,000 items, include books, exhibition catalogs, periodicals, auction catalogs, artists' files and pamphlets. Special collections include documentary photographs, fashion sketches, rare books, artists' books, and archives from artists and scholars. An extensive collection of artists' files features information on Brooklyn-based artists as well other artists from around the world. The Wilbour Library of Egyptology is one of the most comprehensive research libraries for the study of Ancient Egypt. With over 35,000 items, this resource provides information about all aspects of the history of Ancient Egypt. The Museum Archives offers approximately 2,000 linear feet of institutional records, curatorial correspondence, expedition reports, and other records documenting the history of the Museum. Of particular note are the papers of founding curators Stewart Culin and William Henry Goodyear that document the objects and cultures that they studied.
About the Frick Art Reference Library
Each year, the Frick Art Reference Library (www.frick.org/library), established in 1920 by Helen Clay Frick (daughter of Henry Clay Frick, founder of the adjacent museum, The Frick Collection), serves approximately 6,000 researchers, primarily academic scholars, museum and art market professionals, collectors, and graduate students. One of the world's most valued art research centers on art in the Western tradition, it is also one of the most complete resources for the study of collecting and patronage. The Library's book and photograph collections relate chiefly to the fine arts and selected categories of the decorative arts from the fourth to the mid-twentieth centuries. Known internationally for its rich holdings of auction and exhibition catalogs, the Library is a leading site for provenance research. Its renowned Photoarchive of more than one million images documents the work of 36,000 artists. Archival and special collections supplement over 350,000 volumes of textual materials, microforms, and online resources. The Library's active research program was recently expanded with the establishment of The Center for the History of Collecting in America.
About the Museum of Modern Art Library
Established in 1932, The Library and Museum Archives of The Museum of Modern Art (http://moma.org/research/) comprises one of the world's largest and most comprehensive research centers on modern and contemporary art. Housed in the newly inaugurated Lewis B. and Dorothy Cullman Education and Research Building in midtown Manhattan, it serves 4,500 researchers and processes over 5,000 requests for information annually. The Library's resources document visual arts from 1880 to the present. The holdings include approximately 272,000 volumes of periodicals, artist exhibition catalogs and monographs, general exhibition catalogs, artists' books, pamphlet files, auction catalogs, and special collection items, as well as 40,000 vertical files of announcements and ephemera about individual artists, and 4,210 linear feet of archival materials. Collection highlights include works on Dada and Surrealism, The Franklin Furnace Artist Book Collection, and the Political Art Documentation and Distribution Archive.
About Innovative Interfaces
Innovative Interfaces dedicates its energies to meeting the needs of libraries and the challenges of library automation. The company has fulfilled this mission with first-rate services and products such as the Millennium integrated library platform, the INN-Reach direct consortia borrowing solution, Electronic Resource Management, and the Encore discovery services platform. Today, thousands of libraries of all types in over 40 countries rely on Innovative's products, services, and support. The company is located in Emeryville, California with offices around the world.